NLRB General Counsel Proposes Significant Change to Arbitration Agreements

National Labor Relations Board General Counsel Peter Robb has expressed strong recommendations to give employees access to collect more damages after an arbitration or settlement. This is a stark departure from the otherwise pro-employer and red-tape cutting expectations of the Trump Administration. Currently, employers cannot use an arbitration agreement or settlement agreement to prevent an employee from filing a charge or complaint with an administrative agency, such as the NLRB or the EEOC.


In a brief responding to the recent U.S. Supreme Court case Epic Systems v. Lewis, the General Counsel concluded employers cannot limit an individual’s remedies before an agency. If the NLRB affirms a general counsel’s recommendation in Prime Healthcare Paradise Valley, LLC, it could impact arbitration, settlement, and similar agreements. The General Counsel has signaled a willingness to push his recommendations into practice in a way that the NLRB Regional Offices have not seen in years.


Matt Austin owns Austin Legal, LLC, a boutique law firm based in Ohio that limits its representation to employers dealing with labor, employment, and OSHA matters. You can reach Matt by calling him at (614) 843-3041 or emailing him at